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RE: Aquatic Plants Digest V5 #232

Michael Laflamme:
"Protien Skimmer (or Foam Fractionators) won't work in fresh water due to the 
viscosity of the water.  Salt water is much thicker (?) or more viscous than 
fresh water, therefore it is much easier to produce foam.  Look at a beach 
versus a lake shore.  You see much more foam at the sea shore.  Objects in 
salt water float much better, and higher in the water, then freshwater due 
to this principle."

To my knowledge, the viscosity of salt water and fresh water does not differ 
too much.  And foaming has got to do with surface tension rather ... or something 
like that.  But I thought it is the protein or organics in the water that causes 
the foaming.  (Objects floats better due to higher density of SW... not viscosity
...although in most cases higher density means higher viscosity... BTW, SW has the
SG of about 1.022... not very much higher.)

Like someone has posted, protein skimmer gets rid of the protein before it is 
turned into NH3.  Therefore, it will reduce the N level.  In SW aquarium, it is 
critical to keep the overall N low for some anemonaes.  Although I am not sure 
whther protein skimmer will work in the FW, IMO, it is not really needed in the 
planted aquarium, since NH3 can be utilised by plants and is usually kept in 

BC (Singapore)